Perspectives

CEO Concerns About Trump

From the Minnesota Business CEO Survey

By Steve LeBeau
Tue, 2017-01-17 15:04

About one third of the CEOs in our survey said one of the worries that keep them up at night are concerns about President Trump. Here are some comments:

Backwards on Equity 

“Representing women owned companies and the new President/Vice President not supporting gender and race equality can set us backwards in pecking order. My worry is that legislative initiatives could go away that promote women and minorities. For instance, goals for women and minority businesses in public-funded contracts, women’s health coverage guarantees in the Affordable Care Act, and the child care tax credits.”
—Barb Lau (speaking as an individual and not on behalf of her organization)

The Country Needs Him 

“My concerns with the new administration are that they will not be able to achieve the goals they have set. I believe a cabinet stacked with business people verses career politicians and liberals is what this country needs to get back on track. It takes a business man to run the largest business in the world. The president needs to surround himself with the best available talent for the job, not the person that bundled the most donations or those to whom they owe a favor. Why do we have the highest corporate taxes in the world? Why has our military been depleted to pre WWII levels? Why do we have such a large trade deficit? Why has our national debt nearly doubled in the last seven years? Why is racial division in this country at pre-George Wallace levels? Why does the DOJ sue states for enforcing our federal immigration laws? Why are our police and troops no longer admired as heroes?”
—Barbara Potter, President, T J Potter Trucking

Cautious Optimism 

“I regard this POTUS with cautious optimism. On the one hand we have an opportunity to reset in some areas that are crucial to the long-term sustainability of the US manufacturing, trade and tax policy. Clearly, unbridled globalization and bilateral trade relationships that cede our sovereignty to international tribunals have unintended consequences in middle America. These issues should be brought back into focus and questioned.

"On the other hand, the POTUS has no experience or track record in politics or government and has shown narcissistic tendencies and some significant lapses in judgment and decorum. The pace of change is accelerating and we need a steady hand on the tiller. We need considered judgment, not reflexive sound-bites and tweets. This is high-stakes and the POTUS is representative of all Americans and all humanity. It is certainly unfortunate that in campaigning he tapped into racist and misogynistic undercurrents, giving voice and legitimacy to them. The sooner he shows leadership by modeling the American values of equality and justice, the higher the chances that he can rise above base partisanship and use this high office to restore faith in the American ideal.”
—Anonymous

Exclusion? 

“One of my most deeply held values is inclusion. I hope we can build on the progress we’ve made to include all Americans in our economy and civil society. The Improve Group uncovers the perspectives of people who are marginalized to help them be more fully included — these people are feeling vulnerable and afraid. I will be watching to see how the administration includes people— even the most vulnerable — as it rolls out initiatives.”
—Leah Goldstein Moses, Founder & CEO, the Improve Group 

Trauma Trigger 

“My concerns about Donald Trump go beyond just business, though they certainly include worries about things like international trade and access to markets. As a survivor of rape and sexual assault, having a known sex-offender as our President means reliving trauma on a daily basis, regularly being inundated with rape triggers caused by his actions, words and demeanor, and it has proven very hard to focus on my work (or anything else) while dealing with this onslaught of mental health issues. As a women’s rights organization, we fear for the safety of our customers, employees and partners, and we know that we will have to fight even harder over the next four years to create spaces for all people to feel safe, valued and respected.”
—Joy McBrien, Founder & CEO, Fair Anita